Conference at Bangor to set research agenda on benefit revolution in the lives of up to half a million Welsh people

During 2015 around 500,000 households across Wales will start to feel the effects of the new Universal Credit. What effects, will this huge change have on the disabled and unemployed; landlords and tenants or paying for child care?

A Conference at Bangor University will discuss this momentous change. It is organised by Bangor University with the cooperation of the Coleg Cymraeg Cenedlaethol and will be held at Reichel Hall on Friday 23 January 2015. It is the only open event in Wales, as far as organisers are aware, which will discuss the new changes.

The Conference will include talks by politicians, local government representatives, researchers and service users and workers in the field as they thrash out how the changes will affect people. There is also a warm welcome for other societies and organisations to register and attend. The Conference will be in Welsh but simultaneous translation is available.

The introduction of the Universal Credit is possibly the biggest change to the welfare system since 1948. The new Credit will change elements of the welfare support with the intention that nobody would be worse off from working rather than claiming.

Among the speakers will be Hywel Williams the local Plaid Cymru MP for Arfon who will deliver a keynote speech and Guto Bebb the Conservative MP for Aberconwy.

Dr Myfanwy Davies, the Conference organiser said:

“Introducing the Universal Credit will be a fundamental change to the Welfare State which shifts the responsibility onto individuals to move into work. I’m very pleased that we are holding the first conference in Wales to discuss this important change.

Our intention is to have a meaningful discussion with all the actor involved so that we can understand which questions we as researchers need to start answering.”

Professor John Hughes, Vice-Chancellor of Bangor University, will open the Conference. He said:

“Since its foundation Bangor University has a long and proud tradition of serving families and communities across the north of Wales.

The innovative Conference will not only discuss the changes which will have a profound effect on individuals and communities but it will also create a research agenda with the individuals and agencies that will be involved in the change or affected by it. This conference is thus totally in keeping with Bangor’s tradition of using knowledge to understand and improve life in our communities.”

Universal Credit Conference

23 January 2015, Neuadd Reichel, Bangor University

Free Admission. To Register: Siôn Jobbins, s.jobbins@colegcymraeg.ac.uk

Schedule of the Day: http://www.colegcymraeg.ac.uk/en/news/conferences/aquietrevolutioninthewelfarestate/

Publication date: 5 January 2015